Portsmouth shipping company admits fault at court over worker crushed to death

A SHIPPING company has admitted fault after appearing at court over the death of a worker.

By Steve Deeks
Tuesday, 1st March 2022, 4:59 pm
Updated Tuesday, 1st March 2022, 5:03 pm
Mieczyslaw Siwak, known as Mitch by his friends, who died in an incident at Portsmouth International Port.
Mieczyslaw Siwak, known as Mitch by his friends, who died in an incident at Portsmouth International Port.

Dad-of-one Mieczyslaw Siwak, known as Mitch, was crushed by two containers at MMD Shipping Services at Flathouse Quay in Portsmouth August 25, 2017. MMD is now known as Portico Shipping.

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The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) launched an investigation into the incident after the 34-year-old’s death.

The firm, which is owned by Portsmouth City Council, pleaded guilty to breaching Section 33 of the Health and Safety at Work Act at a hearing at Portsmouth Magistrates' Court.

Sentencing was adjourned until August 15.

A jury inquest previously reached a unanimous verdict of death by an accident.

At the time HSE raised concerns about a driver’s view being ‘completely obscured’ when carrying a container at a low height to drop off a container on the ground floor, as well as drivers not using radios enough to communicate with people on the ground.

New equipment was bought in August 2019 as part of a promise during the inquest made to improve safety.

The new Kalmar reach-stackers are able to monitor driving styles, shocks and pressure points that can slow down the operation.

Mitch was originally from Poland but was living in Bognor Regis.

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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